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Library Buzz

The Library is coming to Hawes!

Drop-in research help will be available outside the Hawes Study on Wednesday, November 19th from 6:00 to 7:00 pm.  Stop by to talk with a Librarian and get help with your projects and papers!


Can’t make it to Hawes on Wednesday?  Don’t worry!  We’ve got you covered!  Drop-in research help is available 7 days a week, from noon to close at the Library Service Desk.  Nowhere near the Library?  We’ve still got you covered!  Email (, call (617-879-2222), or IM chat with us!

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Uncovering Reference Books: Art reference sources add color to your day

Are you getting an Arts degree from Wheelock? Doing the Art History program in conjunction with Emmanuel? Need some help on a paper, presentation, or assignment for Marjorie Hall’s class that has you stumped?

Or maybe you aren’t taking classes in art. But have you ever been walking through the MFA, enjoying your life near the arts center of Boston, and found yourself in the contemporary room? And realize you have no idea what you’re looking at? Or maybe you stumbled upon the Jasper Johns: Picture Puzzle exhibition at the MFA and want to know more about his work, such as Target (1974) seen below?

Jasper Johns, Target, 1974

If this sounds familiar, then we have just the reference book to alleviate your confusion and fulfill your curiosity! Contemporary Artists is a two-volume biographic index of contemporary artists that details many aspects of each artists’ life. Read through the biographies of the artists to get a sense of their lives and understand why they are important in the art world. Finding the artist you’re looking for is easy because the set offers an alphabetical index in the beginning of volume one and an index arranged by nationality in the back of volume two.

You can browse through the book to catch glimpses of works from the artists featured within. Although the images are not in color, you can still get an idea of the dynamic and breathtaking art created by these groundbreaking contemporary artists.

And there are even more features. Doing a paper on an artist for class? There are lists of sources about the artists for further research as well as a guide to the artists’ past exhibitions. Or maybe you just want to know what other museums have your new favorite artist’s work. Look at the guide to collections and find another treasure trove of art to explore.

Not into contemporary art? Or maybe you’re taking Women, Art, and Society with Marjorie Hall? Love gender studies or feminism? Interested in seeing the strides women in the United Stated made in art in the twentieth century? Or maybe during that same visit to the MFA, you find a great work by Georgia O’Keeffe, such as Deer Skull with Pedernal (1936) seen below, and want to know more about her and her work?

Georgia O'Keefe, Deer Skull with Pedernal, 1936

If so, you need to check out North American Women Artists of the Twentieth Century: a Biographical DictionaryThis volume contains biographic entries about influential women in the Untied States over the last century. Read through the text, gleaning information about the artists’ birth, life, and awards as you read about their importance and impact on the art world. See how women have empowered themselves through artistic expression and made strides in a male dominated field.

Like Contemporary Artiststhis book gives you reference for further reading, a resource that is essential when writing research papers! Flip through the book to see the styles and techniques of women artists throughout the 1900s. Maybe even pick up some artists to look for next time you go to a museum.

Whether you’re a scholar or a casual observer, you should browse Contemporary Artists and North American Women Artists of the Twentieth Century. You’ll never know what you might discover.

Contemporary Artistsed. Sara Pendergast and Tom Pendergast. Call number: R 709 C76 2002; North American Women Artists of the Twentieth Centuryed. Jules Heller and Nancy G. Heller. Call Number:   R 709.2 N81

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Uncovering Reference Books: All Things Austen

Do you love Jane Austen? Are you curious about what she was like? What England was like during her lifetime? Are you trying to impress Marcia Folsom? Or are you just befuddled by the weird customs presented in her books? If you want to know the difference between a chaise and a carriage, whether or not Jane Austen enjoyed dancing, or why Mrs. Bennet had a penchant for sea-bathing, then All Things Austen: An Encyclopedia of Austen’s World is the reference work for you.

This two volume encyclopedia set seeks to uncover the details of daily life in Jane Austen’s life time and how these details manifest in her works. While the series is less expressly about her books—for instance, there is not an entry for “Elizabeth Bennet”—the entries do provide the title and page number in which it is referenced. Thus, if you are curious to know about “pregnancy and childbirth” during the time period but also how it is depicted in Jane Austen’s books, this set provides access to both.

Jane AustenPerhaps one of the most exciting features of the encyclopedia is its inclusion of Jane Austen’s writings. For example, it is typical to think only of Jane Austen’s novels when considering her work—however, she wrote character studies, comedy sketches, novel plans, etc. The breadth of her work is incorporated into the set, thus providing a comprehensive lens through which the facets of Jane Austen’s world can be appreciated by the curious and aficionados alike.

Take a peek into this set to learn about eighteenth-century teatime, taxes, and even dentist appointments. It will be a diverting dip into the life of one of the world’s most celebrated writers.

All Things Jane Austen: An Encyclopedia of Austen’s World, ed. Kristin Olsen, Call: R823 .Au74zOL8a

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Where Do You Keep Your “Fun” Books?

Floor 1 by the whiteboard columns and they’re organized by the author’s last name.  It’s our new and exciting Popular Reading Collection!

Not that our children’s lit on Floor2M or our literature books on Floor 4M can’t be fun. Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night is absolutely filled with hijinx.

The Popular Reading Collection was created in response to our patrons who come to the Library looking for something to read outside of their academic lives. We selected books for this collection based on recommendations written on our whiteboard columns. The books were then purchased with part of the proceeds from Better World Books donations.  You can add further title suggestions to the whiteboard column labelled “Books Worth Reading”.

This Fall, we’ve started the collection out with about 30-something titles. Here are just a few of them:


bookthiefThe Book Thief by Markus Zusak
Death tells the story of Liesel, a young German girl, who loves books so much that she steals them. She shares their stories with her family, the Jewish man hiding in her house, and her neighbors, providing respite to the horrors of World War II.

Divergent by Veronica Roth
In a future dystopian Chicago, members of society must dedicate their entire lives to one of five personality-based factions. After taking an aptitude test, sixteen-year-old Beatrice Prior finds out that she is “Divergent” and does not fall neatly into one group, making her a threat to the status quo.

eleanorparkEleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell
New girl, Eleanor, is overweight, weirdly dressed, abused, and bullied.  Park has always been a bit of a loner. Set over the course of one school year in 1986, the two teenage misfits fall in love over comic books and mixed tapes. Fans of John Green’s Fault in Our Stars may want to check this book out.

Feed by M.T. Anderson
The story takes place in a hyper-computerized future where most people are connected with a computer network through a feed, or transmitter, implanted in their brains. The narrator is a teenage boy, Titus, who has lived his entire life communicating using the feed. He meets a girl, Violet, who has decided that she wants to resist the feed.

knifeofneverlettinggoThe Knife of Never Letting Go by Patrick Ness
Todd lives in a small dystopian colony where a germ has killed off all the women and as a side effect of the germ, everyone can hear each other’s thoughts, described as “Noise”. One day, Todd discovers a spot of silence.  Once everyone hears about it, they set out to capture him. It turns out that the colony’s past is not what it seems.

Midwinterblood by Marcus Sedgwick
This book contains seven stories that are mysteriously linked and all take place on a Scandinavian island inhabited by Vikings, vampires, ghosts, and a curiously powerful plant.

peculiarchildrenMiss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs
After his grandfather’s unexpected death, Jacob is given a letter that leads him to a Welsh island where his grandfather grew up. He finds an abandoned orphanage where he meets a girl who uses time travel to take him back to 1940. He discovers disturbing facts about the children who were kept there. The author’s incorporation of vintage photos of children really drives the eerie atmosphere.

Paper Towns by John Green
Quentin “Q” Jacobsen has a crush on his neighbor, Margo Roth Spiegelman, since they were kids.  Margo shows up one night at Quentin’s bedroom window dressed like a ninja and takes him on an adventure to get revenge on people who have hurt her. She then mysteriously disappears. Q searches for her using clues he believes she has left behind.

Proxy by Alex Londonproxy
The story takes place in a world of wealthy Patrons and poorer Proxies.    When a Patron breaks a law, the Proxy takes the punishment in his place.  When Knox, a Patron, kills someone in a car crash, his Proxy, Syd, is sentenced to death. Syd flees and Knox, realizing how unfair the system is, joins him. Together, they try to beat the system.

Reality Boy by A.S. King
Seventeen-year-old, Gerald Faust, has been struggling to control his anger, a result of suffering from a dysfunctional family. When he was 5, his family signed up to take part in a reality show where a nanny would come teach the family how to behave healthily and properly. The entire world watched as Gerald defecated in anger and he was given the nickname, Crapper. He meets a no-nonsense girl, Hannah, also from dysfunctional family, and she helps him put his anger to rest.


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Why do they stay? – Part 4


This is Part 4 in a week-long series of posts written by a Wheelock College Social Work faculty member and two Masters in Social Work graduate students in recognition of Domestic Violence Awareness Month. View previous posts in this series – Part 1, Part 2, Part 3.

*Trigger warning: some of this article may include descriptions of domestic violence that could be distressing for some readers

The stories that we have shared this week reveal the methods and manipulation that an abuser uses to maintain a deep-rooted control over the victim. It also illuminates the systemic barriers such as housing and employment issues that make it difficult for a woman to exit. Finally it demonstrates the major loss not only of a familiar home but also of a relationship that is connected to their identity. Acknowledging these dynamics, it is important to stop asking people why they stay, or stay for so long, and begin asking, “What can I do to help?”

In closing we will share our perspectives of DV and how you may help. I will always remember my encounter with a patient in the emergency room. I was paged to rule out any trauma as she disclosed to the physician that she was assaulted in a local urban park walking her dog. She had visible physical injuries and during my assessment seemed to not be emotionally distraught over the experience. This was an unusual presentation in my clinical experience but I did not want to press the patient so I provided emotional support in the therapeutic relationship regarding the incident. Several months later I saw her after her labor and delivery. She revealed to me that she had left her abusive partner and was healing emotionally from an abusive relationship. I confronted her if the assault in the park was her abuser rather than a stranger. She confirmed my assumption to be true. Immediately I felt disappointed in myself for not probing further in the emergency room about the assault and not listening to my clinical judgment that her affect and mood did not align with the traumatic experience. I was upset with myself for knowing that she returned to the person who had physically harmed her. I decided to apologize to her for not discussing DV issues with her in the emergency room. She looked at me and told me, “I was not ready to share at that time. I would not have told you anyway. If you had pushed me I may not have left.” I reflected on this interaction for a long time. I realized that in discussing the “assault” in the park, the emotions around that, such as feeling vulnerable, used, and afraid, I was actually validating and normalizing her feelings around living with an abuser. She processed with me indirectly that her life was not safe. I learned that my role is not to protect, save, and indirectly “control” the victim’s decisions, but instead to listen and validate and hopefully empower someone to believe in their capabilities and uniqueness as a human being.

Another survivor came to me in her third session of support and we had reached a point in our relationship of establishing trust and rapport where I was able to start talking about the cycle of violence, as well as the different types of abusive behaviors one may exert that may be prevalent in domestic violence. As we were going through explaining the emotional and verbal examples she said to me “Wow. That is exactly what he did to me. I cannot believe it, he was abusing me and I did not even realize it.” She began to tell me how strong she felt that she was recognizing what had happened and all of the steps she had taken to keep herself safe. She was able to understand the measurements of safety she encountered to keep her and her daughter safe while he continued to abuse her. She also stated “I finally feel like this wasn’t my fault. It was him, not me. I am a good mom and I have always put myself first. I really cannot believe it.” When measuring success of a survivor of domestic violence it is important to define success by not if they left the relationship, but did they feel empowered and validated in sharing their experience, and how have they been able to use tools on their own to continue staying safe.

When a survivor shares their story, the most important thing one can do is to listen to them, believe them, and validate their feelings. Although our instincts as human beings may make us want to save them from their situation, it is so important that we do not tell them what to do. Abusers have taken complete control of their partners life, so the last thing we want to do is add to this experience by telling a survivor what to do. Just being there for a survivor is important, especially when the survivor’s other social supports have grown so frustrated with the survivor’s decisions that they stop listening. Being there for a survivor, and allowing them to make their own choices is empowering for them when they have been living in an environment where they have no control. It is important to work with survivors in a supportive way that promotes self-determination, but in a way that also reflects concerns for safety to make sure survivors are staying as safe as possible in the decisions that they make.

Heather Howard, Ph.D.(c), LICSW,MSW
Wheelock College Social Work Instructor

Kate Kennedy
Wheelock College MSW Candidate

Meghan Sullivan
Wheelock College MSW Candidate

Visit the Wheelock College website to find out more about our undergraduate and graduate Social Work programs.

If you would like to speak to someone at the Wheelock College Counseling Center, please call 617-879-2410 or email

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